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Job Burnout in IT: symptoms, control methods and prevention


Perhaps, from all eternity we hear the phrase “burned out at work”, but if earlier people were attacked by melancholy or paranoia, then right now, a disease of the digital era is an emotional and professional burnout. Being a syndrome of the present for absolutely all areas, we will single out its general symptoms. But before that we make an important reservation - now social media are quite actively declaring that it is the sphere of information technology that is subjected to total and mass burnout - it’s a sheer myth. The IT sphere is too popular, large-scale in terms of employees number, responsive to various trends such as life-work balance, and, importantly, solvent, which means that it’s very easy for psychotherapists to make money on tired IT specialists. Burnout does not choose an occupation. IT specialists, according to statistics, are so far only in second place in burnout, giving way to doctors and teachers.

WHAT IS IT?

So, to start with, let's define the concept we are considering according to WHO. Burnout syndrome is a physical or emotional exhaustion characterized by impaired productivity at work (fatigue, insomnia), an increased tendency to somatic diseases (heart disease, gastrointestinal tract, liver, kidneys diseases), depressive moods, and mental discomfort. That doesn't sound so nice, does it? But in fact, it’s even worse.

HOW IS IT EXPRESSED?

  1. Lack of interest in work, lack of motivation, decreased working capacity.

  2. Decreased concentration, memory impairment.

  3. Anxiety, fears.

  4. Depression.

  5. Feeling of constant fatigue and apathy, worsening of general health, dizziness.

  6. Panic attacks.

WHO?

The symptomatology, as you see, is quite serious and obvious. Now let's get closer to the point. Who burns out first? Beginners and experienced staff in high positions. You want to ask “why”? Because the burden of responsibility presses both the first and the second categories, the only difference is that newcomers are controlled by higher-level employees, and despite the fact that they are given feedbacks on the quality of their work, they are in constant fear of losing their place, and the top staff criticizes itself and often without receiving any comments and praise regarding their work, it is believed that a top employee knows better than others what is right and what is not, and does not need verbal encouragement. And this is the biggest mistake of the “heads”.

WHY?

And let's dig even deeper. Why such self-criticism? Isn’t it easier just to work and enjoy it? Everything’s simple, one of the triggering factors is the conflict of expectations and reality.Previously, a good office was a luxury, but now it’s not enough to be satisfied with your work - satisfied, this very factor that haunts most workers - a sense of moral satisfaction from what you are doing, has become practically unattainable, unlike high salaries and luxurious office areas. Dissatisfaction, gradually accumulating, results in burnout.

WHO'S GUILTY?

The “heads” and and HR management are guilty of the fact that employees burn out. The “heads” must provide timely feedback, encourage their employees, and answer “painful” questions. And HR managers, first of all, conduct a high-quality staff selection, and then conduct one-to-one meetings and find out directly the motivation, satisfaction, pain of employees, notice their anxiety and help to cope with the key “burnout” idea, or at least minimize its effect. It’s good when the leaders themselves keep abreast and hold monthly face-to-face meetings.

Go to the next item.

HOW TO FIGHT?

  1. Remember, at the beginning of the article we talked about life-work balance? So, find this very balance - get enough sleep, walk more, find your source of strength, take a break during the rest, instead of continuing to solve work issues.

  2. Get rid of addictions: social networks, coffee, sweets, alcohol, games - all this takes away your energy and contributes to burnout.

  3. Understand your expectations. What do you want from work, from yourself, from management?

  4. Clearly clarify your job responsibilities and do not do someone else's work.

  5. Try switching and doing something else, increase your self-esteem due to success in a hobby, in the worst case - maybe it's time to change the scope of activity?

  6. If none of the above helps, contact a specialist.

RESULTS

  1. Absolutely all areas of activity are subjected to burning out.

  2. The cause of burnout is poor management, staff selection errors.

  3. Leaders need to systematically communicate with their employees and keep the finger on the pulse.

  4. Improve your self-esteem, be confident in your competence.

To all of the above, it is worth adding that we in the Fusion Team strive primarily to create high-quality working conditions for our employees, which significantly minimizes burnout. In addition, HR management, together with senior executives, conducts monthly personal interviews with all team members, analyzes their involvement, degree of satisfaction, and other aspects.

Kate
Kate CDO
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